Some cancer cells eat sugar, glucose to be exact. But what happens when cancer cells eat the wrong kind of sugar? As researchers in Japan and California found out, it poisons them and leaves them vulnerable to attack, reports New Scientist. The researchers found that tricking the cells into consuming 2-deoxyglucose, a glucose-like sugar, "dislodges a protein within the cell that guards a suicide switch," New Scientist says. Then the switch can be turned on, and the cancer cell destroyed. This could work for several different kinds of cancer, the researcher say in their study published in Cancer Research. When this approach was tried in a mouse model of human cancer, it made the aggressive human prostate tumors "virtually disappear within days," New Scientist adds.
Hoisted by Their Own Petard
Dec 06, 2011